Fort Story (Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story)
Fort Story is one of the only Army bases located on the ocean coast! This installation is in the heart of Virginia Beach. It is combined as a Joint Base with Little Creek, which is about ten miles away. There are many military bases nearby, and this area has a large population of active duty military families and retirees. The smaller bases close by are NAS Oceana and NAS Dam Neck. Further away is the main base of NS Norfolk. North in the Hampton Roads area is Joint Base Langley-Eustis. Fort Story is just a 10 minute drive from ocean front of Virginia Beach.
There are so many things to do and something for everyone in this area. If you're PCSing from a small city, traffic in the Virginia Beach area can be cumbersome, especially if you are traveling between cities. You must you a network of bridges and tunnels to get around the coastal Virginia area, so living close to work will help eliminate traffic. The good news is that everyone here is friendly and the community respects the military. Fort Story is one hour from Richmond, VA, and three hours from our nation's capital.
Off Base Neighborhoods
There are varied types of housing in the area. Norfolk is home to many military bases, so there are many options to rent or buy near Fort Story. Norfolk provides an urban setting, while Virginia Beach and Chesapeake are more suburban. The Suffolk and Smithfield areas are more rural. New Construction and historical districts are not as common in Virginia Beach, but they are available in the surrounding cities.
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On Base Housing
There is on post housing that is older and has been remodeled. Fort Story Family Homes (formerly Balfour Beatty) manages one new neighborhood on base called Bayside, with 3-4 bedroom layouts for enlisted families. The Fort Story housing is shared with the nearby Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek.
There are no post schools on Fort Story. However, there are 11 High schools, 14 Middle schools and over 50 elementary schools located in Virginia Beach alone. 56% of the school are rated above average and 30% average. All of these schools serve our military community but most are concentrated toward the middle and eastern areas of the city.
Cost of Living and BAH
Unfortunately, the cost of living in Virginia Beach has risen, and Fort Story BAH has not exactly kept up with it. This area is more affordable than Northern Virginia, but not as affordable as rural Virginia. The current market is very competitive for sales--rentals and listings sometimes go in days. Typically the BAH does not cover both housing and utilities, so do your research and be prepared for out-of-pocket utility payments. Fort Story BAH for enlisted with dependents begins at $1,599 and goes up to $2,058. Fort Story BAH for officers with dependents ranges from $1,671 to $2,367.
The average sales price for homes near Fort Story is $267,000, and today's market is moving quickly. The proximity to surrounding cities makes it easier to find a variety of sale options. Single-family rentals are much harder to come by, but apartments/townhomes are available as well.
You can expect all four seasons in Virginia, with mild winters and warmer summers. Occasional tropical storms or hurricanes are common July through September, which can mean heavy rains, flooding, and power outages. There are flooding zones in certain low-lying areas of Norfolk, Portsmouth, and targeted areas within certain communities.
Fort Story has good amenities for families. In addition to the standard Commissary and Exchange, there is also a beach specific to military, campground, and picnic areas, and several great wave pools with slides. On post there are boat rentals and parks for outdoor enjoyment. Fort Story also has on-post bowling alleys, a movie theater, and a golf course.
There is just about everything in Virginia Beach and near Fort Story: night clubs, family-friendly activities, state parks, water activities. You'll discover multiple tourist activities and areas to explore. There are oceanfront shops, restaurants, and tourist entertainment in Virginia Beach. Visit the town center for festivals, music, and restaurants. There is a Theater for occasional events and Museums throughout the surrounding cities. These attractions are popular among military families in the area around Fort Story: - Enjoy the miles of beaches, restaurants, and seaside shops in Virginia Beach. - Visit Norfolk, stroll along the downtown waterfront on the banks of the Elizabeth River, or stop by the Norfolk Waterside Marketplace which offers retail shops and dining. - Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center, - Virginia Zoological Park, - Chrysler Museum, - Norfolk Botanical Gardens, - Hampton Roads Naval Museum, - Children's Museum of Virginia - Colonial Williamsburg is only an hour away offering historical areas and tours. the town of Williamsburg also hosts the Busch Gardens Amusement Park. - The Blue Ridge Parkway is 3-4 hours from Fort Story, offering mountain getaways. - North Carolina's Outer Banks is just across the boarder 45mins - 1.5 hours. - Public Hunting areas in Virginia are 1-2 hours away.
Food and Drink
Common Areas for popular restaurants include Red Mill, Oceanfront & Town Center. These areas serve a variety of chain restaurants and local favorites. Virginia Beach is a versatile city, serving all types of dishes, so you will find plenty to enjoy.
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